In an NBA blockbuster reminiscent of when the Sixers acquired the likes of Wilt Chamberlain or Moses Malone, reports indicate that the 76ers will be involved in a four-way trade in which they will get center Andrew Bynum.
A league source says a trade call is scheduled for Friday morning in which the deal will receive NBA approval.
Bynum, the wildly talented 24-year-old center averaged 18.7 points and 11.8 rebounds per game last season with a 20-20 game against the Sixers and a 30-rebound game to his credit, instantly transforms the Sixers into a contender in the Atlantic Division.
The Sixers will reportedly also acquire sharpshooting veteran Jason Richardson from Orlando in the deal. Last season Richardson averaged nearly 12 points per game and during the 2007-2008 season he led the NBA in three-point shooting. In 11 NBA seasons with Golden State, Charlotte, Phoenix and Orlando, Richardson has averaged two three-pointers per game and ranks 15th all-time in NBA history.
The reported price for the Sixers is steep. To get Bynum and Richardson, the Sixers will part with longtime defensive stopper and current Olympian, Andre Iguodala. The Denver Nuggets will get Iguodala with the cornerstone of the deal, Dwight Howard, headed from Orlando to the Lakers.
Drafted by the Sixers with the No. 9 overall pick in 2004, Iguodala was the longest-tenured player on the team and made his first All-Star team in February. He currently is playing for the U.S. in the London in the semifinals of the Olympics tournament, where he’s been the team’s top defender on the second unit.
Reports are that the Sixers will also ship away last year’s top draft pick Nik Vucevic and could also include this summer’s top draft pick, Maurice Harkless, too. Both of those players will land in Orlando. The Magic will also get Arron Afflalo and Al Harrington from Denver as well as a protected first-round pick from the Sixers, Nuggets and Lakers.
Meanwhile, Iguodala is owed nearly $15 million for 2012-13 and $16.1 million for the following season with an opt-out clause. Bynum is owed $16.8 million for the upcoming season in the last year of his contract.
A source said the Sixers have yet to reach out to Bynum’s agent, David Lee, about an extension, but there will be plenty of time for that. When the sides begin to talk about an extension for Bynum, the Sixers can offer the max — three years and $60 million. However, if Bynum were to test free agency, he could command a five-year, $100 million deal.
Though Bynum reportedly said that he would only sign an extension with the Lakers, it’s worth noting that he grew up in Plainsboro, N.J., near Princeton. Certainly a Jersey kid would want to stay close to home, right?
Richardson is owed $5.8 million for the upcoming season and another $6.2 million for the 2013-14 season. He is signed through 2014-15 for another $6.6 million, but has an opt-out clause in his deal.